Thursday, September 20, 2012

"Worst President Ever!"

As you know, I have folks from across the political spectrum chime into discussions on my Facebook wall. This is something I always welcome, as the ensuing conversations are usually fruitful, interesting, and productive. Every once in awhile, though, I run headlong into an ideological brick wall, where talking points are meant to stand in for substantive discourse. I dealt with something like this last week, when someone responded to a criticism of Sarah Palin by proclaiming, "You can laugh all you want at her at least she has leadership experience, All Obama does is apologize his way out of everything. Worst president I have ever seen or read about! He is total lame duck!"

That's a tidy little tossed salad of the memes many on the far right have adopted as articles of faith without thought to logic or consistency. The "lacks executive experience" argument, even after three years sitting in the big chair? Check. The "apologizes for the US" lie? check. The "worst president in history" thing? Check. That last point especially is worth dwelling on for a second. As my friend Ray Nowosielski -- an acclaimed documentarian, and no Obama fan, he -- pointed out to me, "...anytime I hear someone claim he's the worst president ever, I assume that person must have started paying attention to current events in 2009."

And that's it. It's not enough to say Obama hasn't done that great a job. Heck, I've been critical enough of the guy in the past that I'd agree with that. But no, it has to be dialed up to eleven, rocketing straight into stupid. Of course, if the example above illustrates the rampant effects of Obama-hate on a micro level, you can imagine how things are going at Fox News, where, as Jon Stewart demonstrated last night, Roger Ailes' various talking heads are going through some pretty pronounced pretzeling to somehow connect the dots from "Worst president ever!" to Mitt Romney as a viable alternative. Watch the vids after the jump. The language is a bit salty, so be aware before you blast the speakers at work.

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